Extant Development Plans and Policies

Extant Development Plans and Policies

Until such time as the Plan Strategy is adopted, planning decisions will continue to be made in the context of the existing development plans and planning policies.

The current development plans and planning policies for the Borough were prepared by the Department of the Environment (DOE), now known as the Department for Infrastructure (DfI).

They comprise:

Ards and Down Area Plan 2015;

Belfast Metropolitan Area Plan 2015;

Strategic Planning Policy Statement;

and operational planning policies contained in the existing suite of Planning Policy Statements and other planning policy documents.

The Belfast Metropolitan Area Plan (BMAP) was adopted on 9 September 2014 however that adoption has since been judicially challenged and subsequently quashed as a result of a judgment in the Court of Appeal delivered on 18 May 2017.

As a consequence of this, the North Down and Ards Area Plan 1984-1995 (NDAAP) is now the statutory development plan for the North Down area with draft BMAP remaining a material consideration.  Given that the reports of the Planning Appeals Commission in response to the hearing of objections to draft BMAP were in the public domain prior to adoption (now judged unlawful), and the Department’s consideration of those recommendations was set out in its Adoption Statement which was also in the public domain prior to the challenge being lodged, material weight is being given to the policies and proposals in BMAP as they relate to North Down.